STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

The Stormy Daniels story should be a bigger deal

Do...

Posted: Jan 19, 2018 7:35 PM
Updated: Jan 19, 2018 7:35 PM

Donald Trump's personal lawyer formed a private company just before the 2016 election to pay $130,000 in exchange for a porn star's silence about her alleged 2006 relationship with the now-President of the United States, according to the Wall Street Journal.

That seems like a big story, no? And yet, while it's drawn some attention -- particularly in the wake of the Journal's latest reporting Thursday about the private company -- it appears to not be moving the needle much with the public.

Why?

The short answer is I don't know.

The longer answer is also I don't know -- but I have a few ideas.

The first is that the Journal is the only mainstream media outlet with this reporting on Cohen, the payment and the private company. (CNN has not independently confirmed the details.) Cohen has denied any relationship between Trump and Daniels. There may be some trepidation -- by the media and the public -- to dive too deeply into the story given those twin realities.

The second is that it's, well, somewhat icky. A porn star. The President. Aliases. Odd details from Daniels' interview with In Touch magazine, including the President's alleged fear of sharks. (Side note: That fear makes total and complete sense to me. Sharks are terrible.)

The third -- and to my mind, the most likely -- explanation is that the American public is somewhat inured to reports about Trump's conduct with women.

Remember that during the campaign more than a dozen women came out alleging that Trump had acted inappropriately with them over the years. As did a tape in which Trump is heard insisting he can have his way with women because he is rich and powerful. Trump dismissed the tape as "locker room talk" and insisted all the women making allegations against him were liars.

Then, he won. And, whenever issues about women making allegations against him has come up in the Trump's presidency, his aides and lawyers have dismissed them as yesterday's news that voters have already decided they either don't believe or don't care about.

"The President has addressed these accusations directly and denied all of these allegations," White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in December. "And this took place long before he was elected to be President. And the people of this country, at a decisive election, supported President Trump, and we feel like these allegations have been answered through that process."

While that contention is not entirely true -- according to exit polling, 50% of 2016 voters said that Trump's treatment of women bothered them "a lot" -- the fact remains that this Daniels allegation feels like more of the same for lots and lots of people. The reaction seems to be something like, "Sure, there's another allegation that Trump behaved badly. What else is new?"

While I understand that "meh" response, I think this story merits more than that. After all, the Journal is not exactly a fly-by-night media company prone to blowing things out of proportion. And its reporting makes very clear that a) Cohen formed this shell company and b) the company made a payment of $130,000 to Daniels just before the election.

Unless I've missed it, Cohen hasn't denied either of those two facts. (Denying Trump and Daniels had a relationship is not the same thing.) So, if Cohen is on the record saying the Trump-Daniels relationship is a myth, it seems to me he still owes an explanation of why he formed the company, why he did so in Delaware (a state renowned for its loose laws on corporate transparency) and, most importantly, why a $130,000 payment was made to Daniels.

Whether you like Trump or hate him, it's hard to argue that an unexplained six-figure payment from his personal lawyer to a porn star in the runup to the election doesn't warrant more attention -- and more answers -- than we are currently getting.

West Lafayette
Clear
41° wxIcon
Hi: 45° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 37°
Kokomo
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 32°
Rensselaer
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 39°
Fowler
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 39°
Williamsport
Clear
45° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 42°
Crawfordsville
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 37°
Frankfort
Clear
40° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 37°
Delphi
Clear
40° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 40°
Monticello
Clear
40° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 40°
Logansport
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 21°
Feels Like: 33°
Mild Conditions Ahead
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 344373

Reported Deaths: 5864
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion46886885
Lake29643475
Allen19836332
Elkhart18265242
St. Joseph18122242
Hamilton14617175
Vanderburgh10672129
Tippecanoe964833
Porter903491
Johnson7267175
Hendricks6961162
Vigo6513103
Monroe582653
Madison5580124
Clark554881
Delaware5299107
LaPorte5100101
Kosciusko491745
Howard390578
Bartholomew361665
Warrick353673
Wayne351190
Floyd341978
Marshall323348
Cass315832
Grant309052
Hancock297662
Noble278949
Boone270356
Henry268740
Dubois257432
Jackson247834
Dearborn244232
Morgan244144
Gibson211130
Shelby208659
Knox199922
Clinton197723
DeKalb197638
Lawrence197549
Wabash187523
Adams184524
Miami183117
Daviess170345
Montgomery164329
Jasper162013
Fayette161735
Steuben160815
Ripley160621
Harrison159624
LaGrange154033
Whitley152316
White143624
Huntington142810
Decatur140745
Putnam140629
Wells139233
Randolph136823
Clay136626
Jefferson134716
Posey131618
Scott120723
Greene114553
Jay110415
Sullivan107718
Jennings100415
Starke99126
Spencer9418
Fulton92019
Fountain8978
Perry87721
Washington8658
Franklin78427
Carroll76913
Orange73928
Vermillion7069
Owen6879
Parke6636
Tipton65627
Rush6198
Newton60813
Blackford60114
Pike55220
Pulaski47018
Benton4113
Brown3945
Martin3836
Crawford3301
Union2962
Switzerland2745
Warren2683
Ohio2467
Unassigned0266

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events